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Wednesday, May 18, 2022

‘Centre pushing RSS agenda’: Prakash Ambedkar on proposal of absolute power to transfer IAS officers

Prakash, the grandson of Dr B R Ambedkar, expressed serious concerns over the manner in which the Centre under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi “is increasingly eroding state powers”.

By: Express News Service | Mumbai |
Updated: January 20, 2022 2:46:47 pm
Maharashtra MLAs, Prakash ambedkar, Maharashtra news, Maha MLAs suspension, Mumbai news, indian expressVanchit Bahujan Aghadi president Prakash Ambedkar. (File Photo)

The Centre’s proposed move to retain absolute power with self on transfer of IAS officers is another step towards demolishing the rights of state governments enshrined under the Indian Constitution, said Prakash Ambedkar, the president of Vanchit Bahujan Aghadi Prakash, Thursday.

He added, “The state governments across party lines should rise and vehemently oppose the Centre’s proposal.”

Prakash, the grandson of Dr B R Ambedkar, expressed serious concerns over the manner in which the Centre under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi “is increasingly eroding state powers”.

Speaking to The Indian Express, Prakash said, “The Centre is clearly pushing the hidden agenda of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh. It is a step towards destroying the central secular character of the IAS/IPS cadre.”

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If the amendments go unopposed “it will have larger ramifications in the administrative system which goes beyond the political tussle between the states and the Centre,” he warned.

On January 12, the department of personnel and training (DoPT) had sent a letter titled ‘Proposal for amendments in IAS (Cadre) Rule 1954’ to all state chief secretaries. The letter stated that whenever the Centre calls any officer on deputation, he/she would stand relieved from their respective cadre.

It also underlined that officers have to accept central deputation even if the state government disagrees or doesn’t give its consent.

Pointing to these developments, Prakash said, “Basically, the IAS cadre is a well-trained administrative force. Central to its training is secularism, delivering justice, humanitarian outlook. It is also one of the most disciplined forces. Under the pretext of shortage of officers, the Centre is pushing amendments to have absolute control on the officers.”

He added, “The big question is if there is a shortage of IAS officers who stops them from recruiting? There are proper rules laid down with clear jurisdiction of the Centre and the states. The Centre cannot undermine the state authority nor wreck the autonomy of the administrative force.”

Under the Indian Administrative Services (Cadre) Rule, there is a provision already in existence to strengthen the cadre, he pointed. The rule states, “The strength and composition of each of the cadres constituted under rule 3 shall be determined by regulations made by the central government in consultation with state governments.”

It further states, “The central government shall (ordinarily) at the interval of every (five) years re-examine the strength and composition of each such cadre in consultation and may make such alternatives therein as deemed fit.”

 

“All the rules which have been in existence make it mandatory that Centre’s decision has to be in consultation with the state governments. Now, this is the integral aspect of the IAS cadre which is being challenged under the BJP rule in the Centre. And this is a dangerous move which should be a cause of concern,” Prakash said.

He further said, “The Centre’s plot is to create a system where it will be able to control individual officers to get their job done or harass those not conforming to their ideologies and politics. This is evident from its conduct.”

He also said, “Unfortunately, it shows that the Centre is exercising its authoritarian politics and wants to interfere and take control of even the elected state governments.”

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